- Days of strikes against Iranian targets in Iraq and Syria have been approved
- It comes after drone attack killed three American soldiers in Jordan
President Joe Biden said Tuesday he had made up his mind on how to respond to the drone strike in northeastern Jordan near the Syrian border that killed three American soldiers and wounded more than 40.
The U.S. blamed the drone attack on Iran-backed militants.
On Thursday, CBS News reported that plans for days of strikes had been approved.
In its report, CBS did not provide details on what a U.S. approval meant in terms of a timeline for the strikes.
The drone attack was the first deadly strike against U.S. forces since the Israel-Gaza war erupted in October, and marked an escalation in tensions that have engulfed the Middle East.
U.S. officials have to weigh how to punish Iran-backed militias without triggering a wider war. They have repeatedly said they do not want a war with Iran.
And they have pointed to Kataib Hezbollah as the group behind Sunday’s drone attack.
It is considered the most powerful faction in the Islamic Resistance in Iraq, a broad grouping of Iran-backed militias.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said: ‘This particular attack was egregious … the attack was on the sleeping area of our base.
‘And again, Kataib Hezbollah and other elements continue to attack our troops and, again, I think at this point we should — it’s time to take away even more capability than we have in the past.’
Two days earlier the group announced it was stopping all attacks on U.S. forces, saying it did not want to embarrass the Iraqi government.
The US has mounted a series of strikes against Kataib Hezbollah and others across the region but the attacks on American targets have continued. Officials count 166 attacks since October.
Meanwhile Houthi rebels claimed to have hit yet another American commercial vessel with a missile strike in the Red Sea as U.S. forces launched strikes on drones and ground control stations in Yemen.
Military spokesman Brig. Gen Yahya Saree claimed the U.S. was unable to prevent one of his missiles from striking the Koi, a Liberian-flagged shipping vessel.
The Houthis are just one of the Iran-backed groups that are intent on widening the war sparked by Hamas terrorists when they attacked Israel on October 7.